Hunters Will Be Able To Donate Game Meat To Combat Food Insecurity

Jun 5, 2020

Credit Wyoming Hunger Initiative

A new program will allow hunters in the state to donate game meat to those in need.

Food From the Field is part of First Lady Jennie Gordon's Wyoming Hunger Initiative, which is aimed at raising awareness for food insecurity in our state and supporting local organizations that do so.

As a hunter herself, Gordon said she wanted to work with other agencies in the state to allow hunters to donate meat if they wanted to give back.

"Hunting is such a big endeavor here in Wyoming. I think a lot of folks like to come hunt. Oftentimes they have abundance and want to share and there isn't always an easy process for them to do it," she said.

Gordon and the Initiative worked with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Wyoming Department of Agriculture and the Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies to come up with a mechanism to allow hunters to do this.

When hunters get their draw tags, they will receive a flyer with information about the program. The Initiative is identifying processors to work with, and hunters will be able to donate elk, deer, moose, bison or antelope.

"The person who donates the game animal if they're not able-some people may choose to pay for processing-but if they're not able to, then the Hunger Initiative will pay for the processing to reimburse that," she explained.

Currently, they are raising money for that by raffling off two Game and Fish commissioner tags.

Before the game is processed into ground meat, the animals will be tested for chronic wasting disease. Then the Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies will distribute it.

Gordon said she hopes as economic effects of the pandemic persist, people should not be afraid to reach out for help and use these resources.

"It's there. It's available. We're all just one emergency from being in need. So that's what these resources are for. And you can always pay it forward in the future when times are not this tough," she said.

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Catherine Wheeler, at cwheel11@uwyo.edu.